We’re sure you already know how fun wine tasting can be – working through a lineup of delicious Washington wines and picking your favorites never seems to get old. We love that wine tasting doesn’t have to be serious or complicated, but if you’re looking to step up your game or you’re not sure what to expect at your first wine tasting, here are 5 tips for getting the most out of your next tasting (at Rio Vista, of course!)
If you know what you do and don’t like, don’t be afraid to bring it up to the tasting room associate. Being honest about your preferences will help the experts know what direction to point you in. Love a crisp, dry white? Big fan of a fruit-forward rosé? Not into highly tannic wines? Once they’re aware of your particular taste, they just might introduce you to your new favorite wine. Keep in mind, though, tasting wine is a highly individual and subjective experience. A wine you’re not crazy about may be someone else’s absolute favorite. Honesty about your wine preferences is best paired with kindness!
Keep an Open Mind
Even if you already have an idea of what you like in a wine, keeping an open mind will serve you well. Chardonnays may not be your favorite, but they can taste different from vineyard to vineyard and from year to year. A rosé that’s too sweet for you one year may be just right the next year. If it’s a vintage or varietal you’ve never tried before, we encourage you to give it a shot! You’ll never know what you’re missing out on if you don’t try.
Cleanse Your Palette
Some wines have a long finish and leave a lingering taste in your mouth. We love a good finish, but it can affect how you taste the next wine in your lineup. Nibble on an oyster cracker or piece of bread between tastings to absorb the flavors of the previous wine and cleanse your palette so you can taste the next one with a clean slate. This will allow you to taste each individual wine on its own and savor the distinct flavors and aromas they have to offer.
Write it Down
Raise your hand if you’ve ever told yourself you’d remember something only to forget it 5 minutes later. Don’t worry – we’re guilty, too. Jotting down your thoughts on specific wines can help you figure out what to look for in future wines. You’ll be able to look back on your wine tasting and know that you’re all about big, bold reds with high tannins. Bonus: you’ll have a written record of great memories to look back on!
Wine tasting is for everyone – from the experienced sommelier to the beer-loving skeptic. If you’ve got a question, ask it! Don’t worry about sounding silly. The winemaker or tasting room associate is sure to have an answer for you. Chances are, other wine tasters have had the same questions. And if you haven’t noticed, winemakers love to get nerdy about their creations! Whether you’re curious about the winemaking process or what flavors you might expect from certain wines, questions are highly encouraged.
Now that you’re privy to our favorite wine tasting tips, we can’t wait to enjoy your next wine tasting experience with you at Rio Vista on the River or at the Cabin.